Eighty years on. 18th September 1939

18th September 1939

Historical

In Poland, the battle of the Bzura ended with 170,000 Polish prisoners.  Polish Cypher Bureau members arrived in Paris with the German “Enigma” cypher codes. The Polish government fled to Rumania, where they were interned.   William Joyce (“Lord Haw-Haw”) was employed by German radio.  

Game day 18: Italy

Italy took no action. Historically Mussolini believed that the country would not be ready for a major war until 1943.

(sent from my mobile ‘phone)

Market Garden. 18th September 1944, 18:00

Three battalions of Kamfgruppe von Tettau attacked the British re-supply drop zones.
The British had two light artillery regiments and a parachute battalion, who had been ordered to abandon the drop zone and move to the west to consolidate with troops in Arnhem.

The attack started with 1st Battalion, KG von Tettau, advancing on the right flank while the 2nd Battalion used their 75mm guns against the British artillery emplacements.

The British artillery fired on the attackers but with no noticeable effect. The Observation officer for 2nd Airlanded Light Artillery Regiment arrived and set up an OP on the forward slope from the road.

By 18:15 the German infantry had moved within small arms range of the British artillery positions and opened fire. the 75mm battery was disordered and unable to return fire. The 6pr battery fell back in disorder, abandoning their prepared positions. The German infantry continued to advance.

The 2nd Regiment OP called up fire against the Germans who had taken over the 6pr positions, but few casualties were inflicted.

The Germans now opened fire against the retreating British 6pr battery with rifles, mortars and 37mm AT guns. The British guns were eliminated. On the right flank an assault was mounted against the 75mm howitzer battery. One troop was destroyed Nd the second retreated.

2nd Airlanded Regiment RA began to move along the road towards Arnhem.

British artillery fire was inconclusive. The Germans made a few forward moves.

18:27. The Germans opened fire on the retreating British artillery and another 6pr troop was eliminated. On the German right flank the infantry attacked and destroyed one 75mm gun troop and forced a second to retreat. The British focus was now on getting as many units as possible away to the east.

The battle continued with the British trying to escape along the road to the east, towards Arnhem, as the Germans closed in from the south and west.

The artillery OP was overrun, but most of the remaining troops managed to evacuate the area. 156th Parachute Battalion suffered no casualties, but the airborne light artillery lost their HQ, 3 75mm troops and 2 6pr troops (approximately 30% casualties). The Germans came away with negligible casualties.

Eighty years on: 17th September 1939

(being a report of the progress of a solo wargame campaign)

17th September 1939

Historical

Warsaw was bombed again.  St John’s cathedral was hit during Mass.  The Red Army invaded Poland from the east.

U-129 sank the British aircraft carrier HMS Courageous off south-west Ireland. The Royal Navy withdrew aircraft carriers from convoy escort duties.

Game day 17 – France

1st Infantry Corps moved south-east to the border with Germany, with a view to also being closer to any potential move by Italy.  The 1st Battleship Flotilla sailed to Oran on the north coast of Algeria (in anticipation of future events known to the game player).

Eighty years on: 16th September 1939

(being the report of a solo wargame campaign)

16th September 1939

Historical

The Luftwaffe bombed the Jewish Quarter of Warsaw.  Warsaw was encircled by German forces. 

Game day 16 – China on the offensive.

1st Mongolian Infantry Corps, without Russian support, moved south into China.

2nd Chinese Infantry (Nationalist) Infantry Corps moved north-west towards Peking (Modern Beijing).

1st Chinese Infantry Corps attacked 1st Japanese Infantry Corps. 6 attacks @1 vs 3 defends @2.  1 successful attack, no successful defends.  1st Japanese Infantry Corps retreated eastwards.

Background image copyright Milton Bradley/Hasbro

Eighty years on: 15th September 1939

(being the report of a solo wargame campaign)

15th September 1939

Historical

Moscow concluded a cease-fire treaty with Japan, ending conflict with Russian-supported Mongolian forces.  Conscription was announced for Russian men aged 19-20

The first convoy left Canada for Britain.  Canadian men aged 21-24 were to be conscripted.

Game day 15: Japan

2nd Infantry Corps moved south away from Mongolia in support of 1st Infantry Corps.  3rd Infantry Corps on the Japanese homeland moved towards Osaka for embarkation.  1st Fighter Group flew to Manchuria (Manchukwo).

Background image copyright Milton Bradley/Hasbro

Eighty years on: 14th September 1939

(Being the report of a solowargame campaign)

14th September 1939

Historical

Pravda (The Russian newspaper: translation = “Truth”) launched a propaganda campaign against Poland.  The Germans took Gdynya, west of Danzig.

U39 attacked the HMS Ark Royal in the Atlantic. The U-boat was sunk by accompanying destroyers.

Hungary significantly did not declare neutrality.

Game day 14: Britain supports France.

The 1st Infantry Corps of the British Expeditionary Force disembarked in France.  The 1st Armoured Corps embarked for France.  1st RAF Fighter Group flew to north-east France.

The Convoy in the North Atlantic continued towards Canada, where 1st Canadian Infantry Corps moved towards the coast for embarkation.  1st Battleship Flotilla sailed From Portsmouth into the North Atlantic while 2nd Flotilla from Gibraltar headed for the South Atlantic.

Background image copyright Milton Bradley/Hasbro

Some tweaking of the rules.

After review, bearing in mind that each country’s turn represents about 7-10 days, I have reviewed the movement rates.  Henceforth, the following movement rates are in effect:

Infantry 2 squares per turn, Armour 3 squares per turn, Naval units 10 squares per turn, Fighters 12 squares per turn, Bombers 24 squares per turn. Air units must end their movement on friendly territory.  They may move further but at a penalty of losing 1D6 points for each additional square moved.

My logic for the new movement rates is to allow land units more maneuverability, to allow bombing raids between the Britain and Germany to their opposing capital cities, and for a convoy across the North Atlantic to take two to three weeks, which was apparently the normal time period.